The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript notes on the Zemi Nagas by Ursula Graham Bower

caption: physical characteristics
caption: gait
medium: notes
person: Graham Bower/ Ursula
date: 1939-1946
refnum: Betts papers, ring binder 1
person: Centre for South Asian Studies, Cambridge
text: Gait: they tend to be slightly round-shouldered by our standards. Stride in jungle, short, quick, well-balanced; on hills, long and slow, heel on the ground. Women tend to an ungainly, waddling gait, the body held steady, the legs and hips moving, due apparently to constant carrying of loads. Girls elevate this into a swaying. Both have this gait when unloaded.
text: Jumping - neither high jump not long jump anything very great. Have seen a pole jump over 6'3"; pole jump not ordinarily practised.
text: Running - figures not available. Running is practised as a sport. At Taki camp, R.A.F. lads were regularly run down by Nagas representing "hostiles", but this was generally on steep ground where Naga experience told. A Zemi buck in one case caught and R.A.F. boy going full out, the Naga starting 200 yards behind him, and overtaking in a matter of seconds: no European out of nearly 300 ever gave the Zemi youths a run for their money.